The government recently announced a new Green Homes Grant for homeowners and landlords in England to help pay for certain energy-efficient home improvements.
The Grant will pay at least two thirds of the cost of some energy-saving renovations. The maximum amount available is £5,000, or £10,000 if you get certain benefits.
More information has recently been released, including what is covered and how to apply. You’ll need to be quick, homeowners and landlords can apply for the voucher from the end of September but it closes at the end of March 2021.
What does the Green Homes Grant cover?
You must install either insulation or low-carbon heating to qualify for the vouchers. These are called ‘primary’ measures under the scheme and include:
- Insulation: solid wall insulation, cavity wall insulation, under-floor insulation, loft insulation, flat roof insulation, room-in-roof insulation, park home insulation
- Air-source heat pump
- Ground-source heat pump
- Solar thermal water heating
Biomass boilers are also a primary measure, although BEIS (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) hasn't yet given any further detail about conditions that apply to them.
You can apply for top-up insulation if you don’t already have the maximum recommended amount. But the vouchers can’t be used to replace existing insulation or low-carbon heating.
To have low-carbon heating installed, your home will need to have cavity or solid wall insulation and loft insulation (where applicable). You can have these installed as part of a package.
If you install one of the improvements in the list above using the scheme, you can then also get vouchers for a ‘secondary’ energy-saving measure from the list below:
- Double glazing, triple glazing or secondary glazing (only when you're replacing single glazing)
- Energy-efficient doors (only if you are replacing doors fitted before 2002)
- Hot water tank thermostat or appliance thermostat Hot water tank insulation
- Smart heating controls, zone controls, thermostatic radiator valves (TRVs)
- Draught proofing
How to apply for Green Homes Grant vouchers
Homeowners will need to complete an online application form, which will be available through the government’s Simple Energy Advice service when the scheme launches in September 2020.
You’ll need to choose from the list of ‘primary’ measures (insulation and low-carbon heating), get a quote from an accredited trader and have it approved before you get the voucher. You must choose from a list of registered tradespeople in your area to do the work.
Vouchers will start to be issued in late September, after which work can begin.
Green Homes Grant FAQs
You must be a homeowner in England to qualify for the vouchers. Homeowners include owner-occupiers, social and private landlords and park home owners. New-build homes aren't eligible.
All homeowners can apply for funding for at least two thirds of the cost of eligible home improvements, up to a total value of £5,000.
Some homeowners will qualify for vouchers covering the total cost of home improvements, costing up to £10,000.
For this, you will need to receive at least one of the following:
- Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA)
- Income-based Employment & Support Allowance (ESA)
- Income Support (IS)
- Pension Guarantee Credit Working Tax Credit (WTC)
- Child Tax Credits (CTC)
- Universal Credit (UC)
- Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
- Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
- Attendance Allowance Carer’s Allowance
- Severe Disablement Allowance
- Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
- Contribution-based Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA)
- Contribution-based Employment & Support Allowance (ESA)
- Housing Benefit
The vouchers will pay for at least two thirds of eligible measures, up to the value of £5,000.
For example, if you wanted to install insulation costing £4,000, you would pay £1,320 and the government would give you a voucher for the other £2,680.
How much of a grant you can get for ‘secondary’ energy-efficient improvements depends on the amount you’ll get for the ‘primary’ measure (insulation or low-carbon heating).
For example, if you get £1,000 of vouchers for loft insulation, then you would be eligible for up to £1,000 of vouchers towards a secondary measure (such as double glazing or hot water tank insulation).
Those on the lowest incomes won’t have to pay anything towards their home improvements and could get vouchers of up to £10,000. You’ll need to receive certain benefits to qualify.
Traders must be TrustMark approved or MCS registered to be able to do work in your home covered by the Green Homes Grant scheme. You'll need to choose from the government's list of accredited traders in your area.
TrustMark is a government-endorsed scheme for tradespeople that vets their technical competence, customer service and trading practices. The Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) certifies that low-carbon technologies that generate electricity and heat, and installers of them, meet quality standards. TrustMark and MCS both have lists of traders registered with their schemes so you can double check.
Solar thermal panels are eligible for funding as part of the Green Homes Grant. Also called solar water heating, this uses panels on your roof to heat water to use around your home.
Solar photovoltaic (PV) panels that produce electricity aren't eligible for vouchers.
No, the Green Homes Grant won't provide vouchers for boilers. However, vouchers are available for installing other types of low-carbon heating.
The types included are air-source heat pumps, ground-source heat pumps and solar water heating. You must be installing a new low-carbon heating system, rather than replacing an existing one.
You can get a voucher towards double glazing for your home, but certain conditions apply. You must be installing insulation or a renewable heating system as well in order to qualify for vouchers for double glazing. This is because the scheme is split into ‘primary’ and ‘secondary’ measures.
You must install one of the first to be eligible for support for the second. Double glazing vouchers are only for homeowners replacing single glazing. If you want to replace existing double glazing, you won't qualify.
No. Vouchers will only be issued for work due to be completed once the scheme has begun.
Find out more and apply for your voucher, visit the government’s Simple Energy Advice
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